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13 Key Issues for 2013

2013 will be the perfect storm of necessity and opportunity, and those who understand to focus and execute well will have plenty of opportunity to profit.

3 Major Trends for 2013

1   The Great Consumer 'Reset' Continues

Consumers are likely to continue trading down. Today 18% of consumers are trading down across a range of categories. They are also likely to continue penny pinching and cutting back. In 2008, only 8% of consumers said they would wait for sales; today that has risen to 63%. 53% are using more coupons, up 7% from 2008. And 48% have reduced their purchase of premium brands. As a result, we expect to see more innovation in loyalty mechanics and value products, as well as continued private label development in a bid to help consumers live better for less.

To protect margin, we expect CPG companies and retailers to look even harder at their operating costs and supply chains, and to capture total product cost savings through further standardization and improved purchasing.

2   Further Channel Blurring and New Formats

In the "new normal" of today's economy, consumers will continue to be circumspect about how they spend, and old channels will keep on blurring. Today, 26% more consumers are shopping the dollar/discount channel. Shopping the niche grocery channel is increasing, and e-commerce is growing 10 times the rate of offline retail. Large store formats will remain under pressure and retailers need to redefine their purpose. We expect to see retailers increasingly open smaller stores to generate new growth. At the same time, the discounters (notably Aldi) will continue their onslaught while others will test whether existing formats can be adapted to offer hard discount experience.

3   Digital Lifestyles and 'Big Data' Insights

Smartphone penetration is now close to 60%, and 80% have used their phone for shopping related activities, and 70% have used them in-store. We expect retailers to start finding new and innovative ways to integrate these devices into the store experience. For example, Ahold's latest convenience concept, AH to Go in the Netherlands, features digital signage, free consumer wifi, QR codes for product information, and has two "Scan 'n' Go" checkouts enabled for mobile payment.

90% of the world’s total data has been created just within the past two years. Retailers are becoming more sophisticated in their way of collecting and analyzing customer data, using it to offer targeted discounts via text messages or email. We expect retailers to integrate these new-found insights to create more personal in-store experiences. And we expect retailers with loyalty programs to accelerate the sharing of this data with suppliers, at an increased cost.

13 Key Issues for 2013

Dynamic Pricing Opportunities (or threats) in Private Label Opportunities (or threats) in Private Label
Innovation Beyond the Core Co-Branded Partnerships Value Re-engineering
End-to-End Inventory Optimization 13 Key Issues for 2013 Sustainability
Emerging Mega-Cities New Emerging Channels Integrated Multi-Channel Management
Digital Life Big Data, Analytics and Shopper Insights Different Futures for 2020

7 Things You Should Know About Roland Berger


  • Roland Berger is a leading and highly respected global strategy consulting firm, driven by our entrepreneurial spirit and professional excellence
  • We are an independent partnership – in both professional and business terms – owned by 250 Partners worldwide and with 2,700 professionals, generating approx. USD 1 billion in revenues
  • Our mission is to work closely with executives, harnessing the high ambitions they have for their companies to bring about strategic change
  • We think and act from a consumer-driven perspective – no matter what the issue – and in collaboration with our clients, we formulate tailored, creative strategies to deliver greater consumer value leading to enhanced shareholder value
  • We work with a wide range of global Fortune 500 clients, including multinational corporations, private equity and local start-ups
  • Our Consumer Goods & Retail practice accounts for 15% of revenues and has a global footprint with more than 200 dedicated Consumer Goods & Retail experts around the world
  • We attract and retain the best talent – more than 50% of our consultants have operational experience from the industry

Roland Berger was recently voted the "break-out firm to watch in the next 5 years" by the independent research company, Firmsconsulting.


Contact information

For further information about this topic, please contact Jacob Bruun-Jensen, Partner, or Bernardo Silva, Principal, in our Chicago office.

Jacob Bruun-Jensen
+1 (312) 662-5500
Bernardo Silva
+1 (312) 662-5500


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